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50 stories - Elena Golakova Brooks

25 July 2022 Events and Discussions


From Bulgaria to one of Australian wine’s brightest winemaking stars

Leaving Bulgaria at the age of 20 with the ambition to be among the best in the wine world, and at the age of 43 having your name in the McLaren Wall Hall of Fame - this is called success. We wish Elena many more successes with a raised glass in our hand. Cheers!

Elena Golakova Brooks comes from the old wine-growing region of Lyaskovets in Bulgaria. As a student, she had the rare chance in the early 90's to interpret professional conversations between Australian and Bulgarian winemakers. This is how she got to know the magical world of wine and to make her first Chardonnay in a three-liter jar. In 1998, her passion for winemaking took her to Australia, where she became one of the first Bulgarians to graduate as an oenologist at the University of Adelaide.

After graduating in 2001 and working hard in various wineries in Australia, Italy and Spain, Elena started her own production. She put into her job not only everything she learned, but also her basic philosophy, valid to this day: The connection between grapes and the natural characteristics of the wine region, such as climate, soil and terrain, is crucial for the quality of the wine. From the old vineyards of Barossa, Eden Valley, McLaren Vale and Adelaide Hills, she creates high quality wines that have won more than seven hundred international awards.

Today Elena is a famous Australian winemaker who never forgets to mention her Bulgarian origin and is proud of it. Repeatedly awarded and commented on by some of the most respected wine critics, Elena's wines from the brands Dandelion Vineyards, Sister’s Run and Heirloom Vineyards are the best proof of her talent.

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